Originally published at Daily Mail.
Although Hillary Clinton boasts a robust 3.6 million Twitter followers, not even a vast right-wing conspiracy would be able to interact with 2 million of them.
According to two popular online measuring tools, no more than 44 per cent of her Twitter fan base consists of real people who are active in using the social media platform.
And at least 15 per cent — more than 544,000 — are completely fake.
StatusPeople.com, the oldest publicly available Twitter-auditing tool, reports that 44 per cent of the former secretary of state’s followers are ‘good'; 15 per cent are ‘fake'; and 41 per cent are ‘inactive,’ meaning that they never tweet or reply to any tweets.
Just 4 per cent of President Barack Obama’s Twitter followers, by comparison, are considered fake.
The White House worked overtime to purge most of them after a September 2013 report found that more than half of his followers didn’t really exist.
Michelle Obama’s Twitter audience is 25 per cent fake, according to StatusPeople, along with 21 per cent of Vice President Joe Biden’s.
Another tool, TwitterAudit.com, sampled 320,000 of Mrs. Clinton’s followers and found that 18 per cent were fake.
The new measurements will add to the Clinton presidential campaign’s embarrassment following news on Tuesday that a large number of her Facebook fans may represent ‘likes’ that were purchased rather than earned.
Vocativ reported that at least 7 per cent of them listed Baghdad, Iraq as their hometown, a larger number than any U.S. city.
That would represent more than 46,000 people.
Additional evidence of digital astroturfing is that while most of her U.S. Facebook fans are older than 55, most of the Baghdad contingent is in the 18-34 age range.
While Clinton was America’s top diplomat, her State Department was buying Facebook ‘likes,’ according to an Associated Press report from last year.
‘In 2013, the State Department, which has more than 400,000 likes and was recently most popular in Cairo, said it would stop buying Facebook fans after its inspector general criticized the agency for spending $630,000 to boost the numbers,’ the wire service reported.
Clinton left the agency while the inspector general was investigating.
Facebook says it has entire teams of employees tasked with rooting out schemes to artificially boost statistics.
‘When we catch fraudulent activity, we work to counter and prevent it — including blocking accounts and removing fake likes,’ the company reports on its website.
Clinton is in Monticello, Iowa on Tuesday for the first stop on her nascent presidential ‘listening’ tour.
She was driven from New York in a van that her campaign aides have dubbed ‘Scooby,’ after the ‘Mystery Machine’ van in the Scooby-Doo cartoon series.
Daily Mail Online visited Kirkwood Community College on Monday, the site of the event, and heard from students that the former first lady is a ‘control freak’ who may be pursuing legal status for illegal immigrants because the Democratic Party needs a new pool of loyal voters.
Read more at Daily Mail.
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